A new report suggests a new approach may be needed to fix failing schools.
The study from the Thomas Fordham Institute tracked the progress of failing schools in ten states over a five year period, including several in Wisconsin. Institute Vice President Mike Petrilli says the results showed efforts to turn them around fell short, and many remained low performing and still open.
Petrilli says those results applied to both traditional public schools and charter schools.
Petrilli says it’s a sign that changes are needed in how we fix troubled schools. Rather than just throwing extra resources at those institutions, he believes those failing schools should be closed down. Then, he says they could be reopened with new teachers and administrators, with a new curriculum that would help lead toward improvements.
Several of the troubled schools looked at in the study are in urban and low-income areas, where many students drop out or don’t go on to college. Petrilli says there needs to be a culture of high expectations among those institutions that failure is not an option.
The Thomas Fordham Institute is a non-profit conservative think tank focused on education issues.